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Boston University is one of the largest private, not-for-profit higher learning institutions in the US with more than 35,000 students and over 300 programs. This Boston-based university has a long-standing history of diversity, inclusion, and critical thinking. The 17 schools and colleges throughout the 3 campuses provide BU students with nearly endless opportunities for strategic career development that makes their graduates some of the most desirable candidates for employers.

Overview of Boston University (BU)

Students and alumni of Boston University have created an outstanding and undeniably vibrant academic community that has attracted some of the greatest grants, endorsements, and student bodies for decades including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Fulbright Scholars, Presidential Award winners, and Martin Luther King, Jr. These revolutionary thinkers are just a few examples of the greatness students can expect to be a part of with a degree from BU.

The student to teacher ratio of ten to one, and the wide array of educational offerings make Boston University a highly desirable private education. The student body is made up of individuals from all over the US and the world with roughly 75% of undergraduate students living on campus and access over 450 student organizations and activities. All students will have the opportunity to explore programs on six continents and study abroad programs in addition to the three campus locations in Boston, including the Charles River Campus, Medical Campus, and Fenway Campus.

General Information

School Type Private not-for-profit
Campus Setting City: Large
Campus Housing Yes
Student Faculty Ratio 10:1
Graduation Rate 88%
Year Founded 1839

Student Enrollment

Total Students34,657


Undergraduate Student

Male 7,406
Female 11,109

Graduate Student

Male 6,457
Female 9,685

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BU Acceptance Rate and Admissions


Male 26,432
Female 38,049


Male 6,079
Female 8,371

Acceptance Rate22%

Male 23%
Female 22%

Enrollment 3,546

Male 922
Female 887
Application Fee $80
High School GPA Required
High School Rank Required
High School Transcripts Required
College Prep Courses Required
Recommendations Required
SAT/ACT Required
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) Required
Application Deadline December 2
Common Application Accepted Yes

BU Tuition Cost & Financial Aid

The average net price of Wesleyan University is around $29,000. Costs are directly impacted by the fact it is a private, not-for-profit university, the small size of the school, and a large ratio of professors to students. Tuition for both in-state and out-of-state students is right around $56,000 without financial aid, scholarships, grants, etc. Nearly 60% of all Boston University students receive some form of financial aid to help lower the overall costs of a degree. Students can also expect to pay an additional $18,000 or more for room, board, books, and supplies. The good news is that Boston University receives over $27 million in grants and scholarships. Of the $260 million in financial aid awarded each year, 91% is given to students on a financial need basis.

It is important to note that additional costs will be associated with a degree that are not included in the costs previously mentioned. Students will require additional funds to support any entertainment not offered for free by the university, including nightlife and off-campus restaurants. Due to the location of BU in Boston, a city with endless options for entertainment and activities, and its proximity to several major cities, students often enjoy nights out around Boston to interact with students at other local universities and to take trips to nearby cities.

Average net price 2017-2018
Net Price $29,154
Average Total Aid $41,036
Students Receiving Financial Aid 58%
Room & Board $16,160

Sticker Price

  • Tuition In-State - $55,892
  • Tuition Out-of-State - $55,892
  • Books and Supplies - $1,000
  • Room & Board - $16,160
  • Other - $1,950


Students at Boston University can select from a wide range of educational opportunities including engineering, health and rehabilitation sciences, business, law, medicine, education, social work, the arts, hospitality administration, and more. Undergraduates and graduate students also have access to additional academic areas such as military education, physical education, recreation and dance, as well as summer terms and study abroad initiatives.

Graduates have an impressive four-year graduation rate of 84% and a six-year graduation rate of 88%. The well-rounded and premier experience at Boston University secures a 94% retention rate amongst the student population and a growing percentage of students are electing to participate in online degree programs as they become available.

The entire academic experience at BU is enhanced by student and career-boosting organizations, such as professional organizations and special-interest organizations. Each year, students participate in over 80,000 hours of community service as a way to give back to the community. The alumni network covers most of the US and over 180 countries. Students can participate in sports in several ways including varsity, club, and intramural.

Student Population Total

Student Population 34,657

Evening Classes : Yes
Distance Learning : Yes

Most Popular Programs & Majors

(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)

All Business Majors 862 Total Graduates / 19%
Business Administration and Management, General 778 Graduates
Hospitality Administration/Management, General 82 Graduates
Hospitality Administration/Management, Other 2 Graduates
Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs 731 Total Graduates / 16%
Communication, General 427 Graduates
Radio and Television 182 Graduates
Journalism 122 Graduates
All Social Science Majors 639 Total Graduates / 14%
Economics, General 237 Graduates
International Relations and Affairs 206 Graduates
Political Science and Government, General 109 Graduates
Sociology 36 Graduates
Anthropology 25 Graduates
All Biological & Biomedical Majors 422 Total Graduates / 9%
Neuroscience 111 Graduates
Biology/Biological Sciences, General 93 Graduates
Physiology, General 77 Graduates
Molecular Biology 57 Graduates
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 52 Graduates
All Engineering Majors 389 Total Graduates / 9%
Mechanical Engineering 143 Graduates
Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering 128 Graduates
Computer Engineering, General 79 Graduates
Electrical and Electronics Engineering 38 Graduates
Engineering, General 1 Graduates
All Other Diplomas 33%

Outcome & Salary

Boston University graduates have one of the highest employment rates and graduate program placement percentages in the country at 96%. Part of this success can be attributed to the thousands of internships and job opportunities posted by potential employers on campus. The university also offers a Center for Career Development where students learn the best way to create an impactful resume, the ideal delivery of an elevator pitch, effective networking, and successful negotiating. Recent graduates can expect to earn around $62,000 in their early careers.

As a BU student, individuals have access to 600 employers at campus career fairs and nearly unlimited internship opportunities. Graduates go on to work for some impressive and reputable companies and organizations across the country including Amazon, the Boston Celtics, Dunkin’ Brands, ESPN, Google, JetBlue, Liberty Mutual, NBCUniversal, Nike, Tesla, and The White House.

Graduates Salary
College Grads Early Career Salary $62,000
College Grads Average Salary $76,000
College Grads Mid Career Salary $123,700
Return on Investment (ROI)
10 Year Salary Earnings Potential $760,000
20 Year Salary Earnings Potential $1,997,000
Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year $116,616
10 Year Projected ROI $643,384
20 Year Projected ROI $1,880,384
No College Education Salary Comparison
National Average Salary $38,792
10 Year Projected Income $387,920
20 Year Projected Income $775,840

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